Username: Rick Hernandez
Dear Mr. Block
Thank you for sharing our history with us via the internet.
Recent editions or the Louisiana Legends Magazine carry two panther stories. The magazine is a collection of local stories from Northeast LA. Inside of the front cover the editor is listed as:
Username: Linda G. Murphy
Dear Mr Block,
Username: Randy Russell
I was delighted to read about my great, great, great grandfather, Rev. Jeremiah Rousselle in your story about Duncan Smith. I was unaware that he was the first Methodist missionary to the Choctaw.
I have a letter from his grandson, Issac Preston Russell, that claims Jeremiah's father "together with Col. Moultrie and Gen. Lafayette, came to America from France and fought side by side with Gen. Washington". He "was one of Gen Lafayette's Adjutants. He and Moultrie were brothers-in-law.
What he did not include in the letter was Jeremiah's father's first name or where he was from in France. Do you know how I would get that information?
(Randy) Raymond Randolph Russell
Username: Sarah Locklin Taylor
I "stumbled" across your website through a google for "Claiborne Garner" and what a wonderful stumble I made. I have read in absolute amazement the mass of information you have compiled.
I have been researching several family lines for almost 30 years now. The main thrust of my work has been the "Locklin" family in Milam Co., TX and in GA. As I was working on my Locklin family, William Thomas Locklin aka Thomas William Locklin, I found that he had married Mary Etta Garner. I was married to a Taylor. His Taylor line works back to Emma Ellen Garner. I had no further information on her. But, when I saw that my Locklin relative had married a Garner, I became curious to see if I could tie the two Garner women together and maybe further both lines. In my search for information on Mary Etta Garner Locklin, I found what seems to be a connection to Emma Ellen Garner Taylor.
I would very much appreciate your clarification or further information of what I am piecing together. This is what seems to fall into place.
Mary Etta Garner md. abt 1920 to Thomas William Locklin. She was born abt. 1902, in Milam Co., TX. Mary Etta appears to have been a daughter of David G. Garner and Dorothy Jones. Is this correct? Also, was David G. Garner a son of Bradley or Isaac?
Emma Ellen Garner was born Nov. 24, 1868, Milam Co., TX. I am "assuming" she was a daughter of Claiborne Garner and Artelia Willis. Claiborne appears to have been a son of Isaac and Mary Ann Decker Garner. There death notice in April 1903 Thorndale newspaper, for "Mama Garner" - Mary Ann Garner. Emma Ellen Garner married James Turner Taylor about 1888. They had 4 children, they are as follows: Pearl Ellen Taylor b. 1889, Clayborne James Taylor Sr. b. 1890, Myrtle Fern Taylor b. 1898, and Lovie Lee Taylor b. 1903. You may see where my assumption comes into play. Emma's father is assumed to have been Claiborne Garner and she named on of her sons Clayborne.
Do you have anything on either of these lines? Any information would be greatly appreciated!
Thank you for your wonderful information and the time involved in putting it all together for the world to see on the web. Wow....I'm utterly amazed and intrigued!
I hope to hear from you soon.
Username: Mary Ann Golding
Username: linda smith
Dear Mr. Block, I found your website while researching black panthers. I live in southern Georgia, about 80 miles from the Florida border. I have seen and heard what I think is a black panther on two different occasions, my husband has also seen it. the last sighting was this morning,Jan.16,07.We live in a rural area with lots of thick woods surrounding our property. Do you think it's possible that it could be a panther or are we both seeing and hearing something else? Sincerely, Linda Smith
Username: Marc Deye
Hello Mr. Block
Username: James Adams
I read your article on the black panther in Texas with great interest. My father saw one as a boy when alone in the woods between Denton and Sherman in North Central Texas in the 1950's. In addition, there have been several folks here in Wise County (in the Chico area) who have reported seeing a black panther in just the last few years. The Wise County Messenger did an article on it eight or so years ago. One report, as relayed to me from a deacon in the local Baptist church, included seeing one with cubs.
Username: Bart Bernard and Sheila Ryan
I appreciated your article about Isaac Ryan. My wife is a descendant of his family, on Jacob Ryan's side. She is interested in finding out to whom the land grant, issued to families of the soldiers, may have gone to. I would like to see where the land is if possible. Thank you for your help.
Username: Phil Handley
W. T. I was pleasantly surprised to see another of your articles in the Mid County Chronicle. I have always enjoyed your writings and have missed them for the last year or so. Hope all is well with you and your family.
Username: Glenn Guettler
Texas German Society State Convention
March 30-April l, 2007
Username: Carolyn Revak
Dear Mr. Block, I am doing some family genealogy research. Would you happen
Username: Ken Van Dellen
I enjoyed reading about Cornelius Doornbos, Sr., my Uncle Cor. His third wife, Bertha (Berber) Salverda Stappers Doornbos was my mother's half-sister.
Uncle Cor and Aunt Bert visited our home in Ellsworth, Michigan, a few times when I was high school age or younger. (I don't have a wedding date for them in my genealogy, and don't know how early that might have been, nor do I have a death date for her.) Having learned that he and his boys had a big ranch in Texas, I asked him if he had a pony I could have. He said he would give me one if I would pay the shipping. That put an end to that idea.
Some years ago I was at the Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America, perhaps 1990 in Dallas or 1995 in New Orleans, and met a lovely young woman named Doornbos. She was presenting her geological research at a Texas university in Beaumont, I think, and I believe her name was Lisa. The name and the location made me ask her if she was from Nederland and if she knew of a Cor Doornbos. She affirmed that he was her grandfather. We had a short, enjoyable conversation about family connections and lore.
I'm not sure there is anything here worth posting to your guest book, but if you are in touch with the Doornbos family, I'd appreciate it if you'd pass this on. My parents visited down there a few times, and met some of the "boys".
Username: Buck Johnson
Dear Mr. Block,
Having discovered your website, I have enjoyed reading the stories,
especially the ones about the black cats and panthers. In response to your
request, I am writing to report a cat sighting that occurred in Waller County,
Texas about 5 years ago.
My twin daughters and I were driving in my truck around mid-morning (10 or 11
AM) when a large black cat frantically crossed the road (FM 1488) directly in
front of our truck at a distance of ~40-50 feet. Both my daughters, who were
about 6 or 7 years old at the time, exclaimed "That's a bobcat, Daddy!", as they
are very familiar with a stuffed bobcat we have on the wall at home.
I had to correct them, however, as this cat was jet black and had a long
curly tail. The cat was also much lankier than a bobcat and appeared a bit
clumsy or juvenile in the way he ran. It seemed to be all legs, paws and tail,
with a very long stride, as it spun across the paved highway in front of us. I
estimate it was about 3' long and weighed around 40-50 pounds.
Because I have long heard of black panthers being present in the woods, I
immediately came to the conclusion that this was one of them, and that the
stories must be true. I'll have to admit, though, I am hesitant to repeat our
tale in some circles due to the large amount of skepticism it seems to generate.
I appreciate the opportunity to pass on this info in the interest of purposeful
discussion. Please feel free to use on your website as you please.
Username: Mary Johnson
Dear Mr. Block,
I just learned of your work today, but am certain my mom probably has stacks of your articles torn from the Beaumont Enterprise... can't be certain until we have completed the distribution of her personal effects since her death last May at 82. At any rate, I'm sure she enjoyed your articles, as she was devoted to the East TX of her youth... Buna, Jasper, Harrisburg, etc.... & was an avid clipping saver!
We are planning a Confederate veteran memorial service (& installation of a
headstone) for our great, great grandfather, Wm. Pierce Stone, this year at
Bleakwood cemetery, the land for which was donated by Reuben Bennington, another
ancestor. Mr. Stone was purportedly in Spaight's Battalion, but we don't have
details. It would be most appreciated if you could direct us to the best source
of information for his Confederate military service. This memorial was very
important to our mother, so we naturally want to effect it properly, according
to her wishes.
Many thanks in advance!
PS: Regarding panthers (same as a mountain lion?), we saw one (sort of a strawberry blonde) a few months ago at our property in Woodville... BIG, swinging, belly as she lumbered away from us!!! I would gauge her weight at 175-200 lbs.
Username: E. N. Ellsworth
I was attracted to your site by your article on panthers. I live near the
national forest about six miles north of Montgomery. My son and his wife were
leaving my residence the other night and spotted what they both thought were
black panthers. When I told my brother about it, he doubted the sighting. He did
not believe such an animal existed.
Username: Randall Black MD
Do you have the list of the killed or wounded at Calcasieu Pass. In the 21th Texas Cav was a Isaac Key Co G, died in service.
Username: Ray Block
I've thoroughly enjoyed your website. It's a great spot to learn some family history. I believe George Frederick was my great-great-great grandfather. My family branch comes down through George Frederick's son Frederick to his son George to his son Charles Irving to my dad, Norman. As a matter of fact, I met you and your son many years ago (mid-70's) when my dad and I paid you a visit so my dad could get more information on the family tree he was working on. I have really enjoyed reading your childhood and wartime stories as well as your newspaper articles on Jefferson County.
Username: kent conwell
as usual, i need help. i can't find kate dorman's stone at the cemetery. i know you and your boys poured one some thirty years back, but i was unable to locate it. can you provide me some general direction. i did walk the entire grounds.
Username: stephen d. clark
First off, let me say how much I enjoy your stories. I live in the Starks/Fields area and your stories are published in the Dequincy News sometimes. I am a history buff myself, and I enjoy hearing stories about the past and visiting old places. My grandpa had a sawmill down the road a bit back in the 50’s.
In regards to cougars, years ago, late 80’s or early 90’s to be exact, I was bringing a date home one night around 10:00 p.m. It was on Green Island Road about 5 miles north of Starks. At the time, the road was gravel and it was very foggy so we were driving pretty slowly. All of a sudden, this big tan cat with a long tail appeared on the left shoulder of the road. In one leap, he cleared the road and was gone. I’ve seen a lot of bobcats in my day, but this cat was really big. I doubt a bobcat could clear both lanes in one leap.
Another time on my way back from Dequincy around the same era, I was driving home down Hwy. 12 when I heard this scream from out in the woods. It was around 9:30 p.m. and there was no one around. I’ve always heard that a panther sounds like a woman screaming. I don’t know if that’s what it was, but it sure startled me.
I’ve heard various other stories growing up about cougars/panthers from various hunters. But these are my personal experiences.
Keep up the good stories.
Stephen D. Clark
on a trip to Puerto Vallarta Mx. By car From Denver, Colorado to Nogales Mx south to Ciudad Obregon Mx we spent the night. the next monring about 8:00 A.M. heading south I saw a Black Jaguar about 2 hundred Yards from the road heading north. this was on 01/22/07 I had my GPS with me it read 26 39.994 N 109 13.758 W Yes Black Jaguarsare alive in Mexico ... My # 303-410-0588 Richard
Username: Terry N. Todd
Your name came up from a search on Amazon.com for books or articles on the history of the lumber history in east Texas.
I have enjoyed reading some of the articles posted on your website. Your work is greatly appreciated by those of us interested in the east Texas lumber industry.
Have your researched or written articles about the Frost-Johnson Lumber
Company in Nacogdoches, Texas? Nacogdoches is my home town and I am interested
in that company's history and their operations.
Thanks again for your work.
Username: Marlinda Martinez
Mr. Block - I enjoyed visiting your web site and reading about the old days in Nederland. I attended the old 3-story High School, which had been converted to Central Junior High, during the early '70's as a 6th., 7th., and 8th. grader. We were moved to the current Central Middle School building at the end of Boston Avenue for 9th. grade. I am still so sad that I didn't go inside the old building before it was torn down and take pictures. Now that I have reached the advanced age of 48, I find that it's become harder and harder to remember how it looked on the inside. I'm not sure why it's so hard to remember a building I attended daily for 3 years. I do remember the outside fire escapes, the library between floors, and the auditorium where we had choir class. Do you have any pictures of the inside of the old building? I would love to go back in that time in my life and would love to see some pictures posted here or would gladly pay for copies myself. Thank you for continuing to remind us of how far Nederland and Port Neches have come in a relatively short time.
Marlinda Wilson Martinez
Username: Dr. Teresa A. Le Sage
Dear Mr. Block,
Yesterday, I heard from a reliable source that a Black Panther is roaming around Victoria, Texas. He or she was spotted at an associates' chicken coup by 2 people.
Username: derek womack
My name is Derek Womack, I have been reading through your site for a couple
of years. What first brought me to your site was your articles on Sara Jane. I
was researching the Road for a local movie along the lines of Blair Witch, just
using Sara Jane road as the legend. I am going back and re editing and
reshooting elements of the movie.
3rd. We are planning on doing some special features for the DVD, would you be interested in giving us an interview (on camera) about your take on the stories, and then the truth about Sara Jane?
Thank you for your time and your website.
Username: Jennifer Wilson
I am in the process of researching information about the Meadows' fortune in
or near Beaumont Texas. I am reluctant to post particular names of living
relatives on this website, because I only learned of these names through my
mother and have never met any of them personally. I wouldn't mind some of this
information being posted and shared in order to track living relatives, but
would need to discuss first.
I am extremely interested in family history and finding out if my family
members are actual descendants of the same Meadows (spelling?) family that is
related to the estate that originated (?) in or near Beaumont, Texas.
First of all, I have never been able to confirm the correct spelling of
Meadow or Meadows, etc, actually related to the inheritance. My ancestors' had
the spelling of "Meadows," but I also realize back during that timeframe and
relocation of my great-grandfather, the spelling of his name could have changed.
I am trying to locate descendants of my great-grandfather, Kage Meadows, and
find out if there was a relation to the legendary Meadows' estate. To provide
you with a little background, My great-grandfather, Kage Meadows, left his
family in the late 1800's or early 1900's and moved to Beaumont Texas, getting
into the oil business, and had at least 2 more families.
Back in the 1980's, my mother heard of the estate and went to Beaumont, Texas
to research records to find out if there was a relation to her grandfather. It
is with irony that my great-grandfather moved to Beaumont, Texas during that era
and made a living in the oil business and I would be surprised if there isn't a
I really didn't get interested in genealogy and researching information until
recent years. I guess because of my age in the 1980's, I didn't get involved or
learn much about what my mother found out when she went to Beaumont, other than
the fact that she was unable to prove a relation. While there, she did, however,
meet a half-aunt (Myra Loftin) and half-uncle (George Meadows) that she had
never met before. It was ironic that her half-aunt resembled my grandmother
(Victoria Meadows Blakeney) and my mother took several pictures of her that we
will always treasure. Sadly, her half-aunt passed away not long after they met.
The only other information that I have is that my mother's half-aunt, Myra
Loftin, had a son named Bill Yates and a couple of daughters (one lived in
Moscow, Texas). My mother also had another aunt named Jeanie (spelling?) who
lived in Cleveland, Texas. Her half-uncle, George Meadows, lived in Conroe, TX
and he had a son who worked at the police department in Conroe and also had a
If you can provide any information concerning the Meadows' family or if any
of these names sound familiar, I would appreciate it if you would contact me by
Username: carole hoyt
Mr Block all I can say is thank you. I was in Brenham, Texas in 2003 looking for the graves of Thomas Deye Owings and sons. I traveled from Fort Gaines, Ga. with one goal and that was to find the graves I had no luck. Thomas Deye's father and my 5th great grandfather were brothers my family came from Kentucky my ancestors were farmers, but have no doubt when the time came to defend this country they were the first in line. I am extremely proud of my ancestors. Carole
Username: William Bozic
I am researching James B. Likens' 35th Texas Cavalry and have been in email contact with you in the past, so I am wondering if you could answer a question or two. Can you tell me what happened to James B. Likens' legal records from his law firm in Houston? Are the legal records in a repository?
Have you discovered a photo of James B. Likens? If yes, could you send me a scan or tell me where I could find a copy?
Username: Alda Clark
Hi, I am Alda Clark. I live at Singer La. in Beauregard Parish. I enjoy all your documents on your site. I write a little about my life, old times, and family History. I am trying to find information about Singer. When it was founded and about the people. I have read Beauregard History but it doesn't give much info. I also go to Goodhope Baptist Church, the oldest Baptist Church in this area. I know there is a lot of History here, I just can't find it. Would you have any thing that may help me? I first read an article of yours in the DeQuincy News several years ago. Love your work.
Username: Lola Anne Rankin
Hello Mr. Block,
My grandfather, Corbett Whitmire, married Bertie Mae Fletcher (Alta Grey's mother-in-law) after the death of his wife (my grandmother) Lola Mae. I knew Alta Grey and 'Cotton' Fletcher from childhood.
My brother and I continue to do research on both sides of our families who settled in southeast Texas in the mid 1800's. We are related to a lot of the families in that area.
Thank you for your writing. I am still wading through all the articles and find them most interesting.
Username: Joe Pinell
My name is Joe Pinell I've lived in Port Arthur and Nederland my whole life and did not know that there was so much history here till I had a heart attack and started reading a lot. my Friend gave me your web site and have enjoyed it so much. Thank you for giving me so much information on this area.
Username: Betty Terrell Owens
Dear Mr. Block,
First I would like to thank you for your dedication to history. You are an inspiration to all, and I enjoyed meeting you when you spoke one time for a Tejas Chapter Daughters of the Republic of Texas Meeting.
Next, I would like to ask you a question. While doing some research, I was
reading a website on the Wiess family of Beaumont. It included this paragraph:
The Texas Daughters of the American Revolution are currently seeking all Revolutionary War Veterans buried in Texas. Col.George Moffett Chapter DAR of Beaumont has marked the graves of three Veterans. (Stephen Williams, Elder John Parker, and Jonas Chaison) My question is: Do you know anything about Colic LeBeau? I had never heard about him until I read this last night...March, 2007. The TSDAR is also seeking information about William Allen who is said to be buried in our area. The article does not say that Cap. Robert Kidd remained in Beaumont. I would really appreciate anything you can tell me about these men. I know the Jirou Cemetery is gone now.
Username: Christie Theriot-Hollyfield
For many years I have wondered why my grandfathers name was on the High School Baseball Field board and not in any book. He was very well known for working for the Pure Oil, for the school district as a crossing guard, for never missing a football game and for helping run the Bulldog booster club. I was his tag along for many years until the Lord had better plans for him. His name was Stanley Paul 'Pete' Delahoussaye. Could you answer this for me?
Username: LaNell Mueller
I've just been reading some of your articles on Texas' German history and find them very interesting.
Since I belong the the Heart of Texas Chapter of the Texas German Society and we have a program every month, I was wondering if you would consent to my using some of your material, of course giving you full credit, and passing it along to other members. I don't know just yet how we might use it, maybe to read a whole article, or some other way. I think too many of us fail to realize how many hardships our ancestors endured coming to a new country.
My paternal grandfather came in 1884, at the age of 14, working his way over on a freighter. His parents and two younger brothers came the next year. My grandfather settled around Austin, but his finally parents settled in Bosque County. There has been so much of our history that was lost simply because no one ever wrote it down or passed it along to the younger generations.
Thank you for your time and effort in compiling so many historical facts.
Username: Bob Bowman
Hope this finds you well.
Doris and I are working on a fourth volume of Historic Murders of East Texas, and would like to research the murder of the Orange Police Chief in the l930s by a preacher.
Do you have anything in your files you could share with us, or point us in a suitable direction in Orange?
Many thanks for any help you might provide.
Username: Sheila McDowell Laing
Dear Mr. Block:
I am looking for the copyright holder of Texas Gulf Historical Biographical Record, edited and annotated by W. T. Block.
We would like to include the content on a research and bibliographic databases that are distributed to academic libraries.
Might you be able to assist me in this matter?
I look forward to hearing from you.
Username: Don J. Benton
Username: Donald S. Frazier
I am a big fan of your work. I am especially interested in some of the Civil War items you have on line, and plan on quoting form them in an upcoming series of books on Civil War Louisiana. Any chance I can get a full citation for the manuscript owners?
In addition to teaching history at McMurry in Abilene, I also am president and CEO of the McWhiney Foundation. We own State House Press, one of the leading publishers of Texana. If you are ever interested in putting some of your items between boards, we'd sure like to look at it.
Donald S. Frazier, Ph.D.
Username: Phyllis Doucet
Do you recall when the roads in Pt. Neches were first "black-topped"?
Username: Steve Hartz
Username: Fred W. Cohagan
Dear Mr. Block:
As a great grandson of Frederick W. Sternenberg, I was thrilled to read your historical article, "An Extinct Sawmill Town and the Olive-Sternenberg Partnership That Built It."
I would love to hear any of your suggestions on where I might find other published information on Olive, TX or the Sternenberg family (especially about FW Sternenberg during his years in Austin). I would also love to know if I can find a print-quality version of your article as I would like to present it to my father as a gift.
Username: Marypat Drummond
Where exactly was the old Jirou Cemetery moved to? I understand a church now sits on top of it. Do you know what church. Do you know what they did with those buried in the cemetery? I have early (1830-1850) Herring ancestors who lived in Beaumont and are buried in that cemetery.
Many thanks for all your great information!
MP in TX
Username: Dan Salmon
I am looking for info: on the 1st Coushatta Village in Texas, I would like know where it was located ! and any history of its involvement with the civil war.. Thank You, Dan G. Salmon-fishsalmondan yahoo.com
Username: Jeanne Farque
Hi. I work at the SW LA Genealogical & Historical Library in Lake Charles, LA. We have a patron from Washington DC who is looking for information on Eli Berwick and Mary Zelpha Hays. Have you done any research on this family, and perhaps know who the parents of Mary Zelpha Hays are? We know that Eli Berwick married Mary Zelpha Hays in Orange TX July 1860. We also know that Eli Berwick and Mary Z Berwick are buried in the Harris Cemetery in Orange, TX. The date that they have Mary Zelpha being born is 15 June 1826. We were under the impression that she was born about 1840. Any help you could provide; any hints for research, would be most appreciated!! Jeanne Farque
Username: Don J. Benton
I am researching the McGaffey's of Sabine Pass. In your numerous publications, you reference several living McGaffey decendents including Mrs. Frances McG. McMichael of Houston. Would you be so kind as to provide e-mail addresses so I might contact them. Your help is appreciated.
D J Benton
Username: M. Salas
“Hang Jeff Davis From A Sour Apple Tree:” Historical News from 1862 By Mario Marcel Salas
The information below is from a leaflet that German Americans in San Antonio passed out in the streets of San Antonio after they found out about the Germans being killed at the Nueces River by Confederate troops during the Civil War. Many Texas Germans were anti-slavery and opposed to Texas secession. The wounded in the battle on the Nueces were also murdered by gun shot or trampled by horses. The book where you might find this information is also in “Rip Ford’s Texas.” Rip Ford was a Confederate that killed Germans as well. He is buried in the Confederate Cemetery on the Eastside of San Antonio. The Menger in the leaflet probably refers to the owner (relative) of the Menger Hotel in San Antonio who was considered a “traitor” to German settlers. The Maverick is Samuel Maverick from the famous liberal Maverick family. This Maverick was reportedly a member and founder of a KKK type group and of the Knights of the Golden Circle, a group that advocated a slave empire in Texas, Mexico, and South America. In any event, he was a pro-slavery Confederate who hunted down and killed those who refused to support the Confederate slavers.
After the Germans were massacred at the Nueces River, San Antonio Germans issued the following call in the streets of downtown San Antonio. German Unionists marched through the streets of downtown San Antonio singing “John Brow’s Body” and “We’ll Hang Jeff Davis from a Sour Apple Tree.” Confederate troops captured some and hanged them, and “Violence prevailed in the Alamo City and in other German communities until the end of the war.” Germans from hotel rooftops shot at Confederates day and night. (From The Fremantle Diary, US War Department, 1862).
Wording On Anti-Slavery Leaflet 1862 by Unionist Germans NEWS German brothers, are your eyes not opened yet? After the rich took every picayune away from you, and the paper is worth only one-half what you so hard earned now that you have nothing left, now they go about and sell you, or throw you out of employment for Dunhauer, who left his wife and children, wants to do the same with you to the poor you might leave. Now is the time to stay the heads of Dunhauer, Maverick, Mitchel, and Menger to the last bone . . . Do away with that nuisance, and inform everybody the revolution is broke out. It is a shame Texas has such a brand. Hang them by their feet and burn them from below.
For more information contact: msalas7831 satx.rr.com
Username: Nancy Gray Machen
Dear Mr. Block:
I am so thankful that I found your website and am enjoying reading all of your articles. Since you are a genuine historian of the area, I am hoping that you can help me in my quest to find out more factual information about some of my family history.
My grandfather Oliver Allen Perry’s father’s real name was Oliver Babbs and he born in 1846 in Ohio County, Indiana. He fought on the Northern side during the Civil War. My mother has his original Union Army discharge and re-enlistment paper in her safe deposit box. The text of that document states:
"Know ye, that Oliver Babbs a Private of Captain W. C. Harris' Company, (K)
38th Regiment of Illinois VOLUNTEERS who was enrolled on the twelfth day of
August one thousand eight hundred and Sixty One to serve three years or during
the war, is hereby Discharged from the service of the United States this Twenty
Eighth day of February, 1864, at Ooltawah, Tennessee by reason of Re-Enlistment
as a Veteran Volunteer. (No objection to his being re-enlisted is known to
exist.) Said Oliver Babbs was born in Ohio County in the State of Indiana, is
twenty years of age, Five feet Seven Inches high, Fair complexion, Gray eyes,
Dark hair, and by occupation when enlisted, a Farmer.
Note that it says that he was 20 years old in 1864 which would make him born in 1844. He was actually born in 1846, but wanted to join the Union Army with his older brother William Melville Babbs, so he lied about his age in order to get in. Their names are next to each other in the roster of Company K, 38th Illinois Regiment.
When the Civil War ended, Babbs' company was situated near Victoria, Texas. This is where the dates and places get fuzzy, but following the War, he went to work in a lumber or sawmill in "East Texas" along with other war veterans. The Yankee Carpetbaggers had put a Negro overseer in charge of the sawmill.
This overseer was very abusive to the mill workers and was very “uppity”. According to my uncle Seth Perry, Oliver Babbs and a couple of other men waylaid the Negro overseer and killed him. This created quite a consternation among the Yankee Carpetbaggers and they were determined to punish whoever was responsible. The situation became dicey enough that Oliver Babbs and the other men were forced to flee the area.
He ended up in the northwest Louisiana area. This was when he dropped the Babbs surname and started to go by Oliver Perry. We do not know why he picked the name Perry as it does not appear anywhere in the known Babbs family tree. He apparently just plucked the name out of the thin air. He eventually met and married Victoria Allen. They were married in Mooringsport, LA. She and Oliver ended up in the Oil City, LA area.
I distinctly remember when Grandpa Perry and Seth told me the sawmill story. I was in the eighth or ninth grade and Seth was staying with us on one of his extended hunting trips. He and Grandpa would consume a lot of beer every night and sit around reminiscing about old times, especially the Civil War (Seth’s favorite subject except for how Hitler had really had the right idea about the Jews!). I was usually only halfway listening, but when Seth asked him something about the time that his father had killed the “nigger” and had to change his name, my ears instantly perked up. When they noticed that I was listening, Grandpa wanted to drop the subject, but Seth insisted that I should hear the story. Seth then told me the story while trying to get more details out of Grandpa.
The only part I don’t remember was exactly where the sawmill incident happened, but it was somewhere in East Texas. I started asking a lot of questions and Grandpa clammed up. I got the distinct feeling that it was a hush hush family secret that should not be talked about.
When my father died and my Mother's brother Earl came down for the funeral and stayed a few days, I asked him about it. He seemed surprised that I knew but said that it was true. Apparently Oliver Babbs told his son and then Oliver A. Perry told his sons. I asked Earl a lot of questions about it but he didn’t know anything more, like the names of the other two men who were involved or exactly where the incident had occurred. Earl said that Oliver Babbs and the other two men had made a pact to never tell anyone about the incident and then they had all gone their separate ways.
I was wondering if in your research of the Reconstruction period, you recall ever reading about any similar circumstances of a Yankee-installed Black overseer of an East Texas sawmill being murdered and the culprits getting away. If so, I would be very appreciative of any additional information that you could provide.
Nancy G. Machen
Username: CHARLIE NEILL
Username: sam evans
i was running though the woods by my house this morning 04/21/07. and i saw a black panther. HAMMOND LOUISIANA.
Username: Lynell Powers
Thank you for the privilege of reading about your great-grandpa Duncan Smith. I admire you for having taken the time to write about this very fine gentleman. Although I am not a great fan of the civil war, it seems there is an as important war in the hear and now which owes my attention, this short Bio on him did move me. It sent a proud shiver up my spine.
Except for a very limited amount of Americans few understand and applaud today much of the valor, the immaterial force, to take a personal moral stand, such as Mr. Duncan Smiths' actions is about unheard of today with us Americans. I just do not have the writing ability to describe my true feelings of admiration I have for your fathers', grand pa.
Today's wars are fought by young American folks more for the sake of personal gain of benefits after service then a call to inner moral duty as you have written. I feel most have only a small semblance of the fine deep seated moral motivation of your respectful great-grandfather. I will not go off in the direction of today's troops. I did spend a near enlisted career in the army.
It is men like him which make me proud to be a man who can stand taller being reminded how very proudly, above all else today, we are one nation with more freedom then most of the rest of the world can begin to understand much less appreciate.
Username: Beth Bow
Username: Kenneth G. Hebert
My name is Kenneth Hebert and I live in Lake Charles, La... I am 54 Years old
and work as a Hunter Education Instructor, for the Louisiana Department of
Wildlife & Fisheries.. I just want to give you some Information, and if you want
to Contact me that's fine, but I don't think I want this E-mail posted on your
website !... There is a guy here at our office, named Jerry Ferguson. He is a
Fisheries Biologist, and used to be a member of the McNeese University
(Archeological Club)... Back in the 1970's a person showed up at one of their
monthly meetings, and told them that he had found something on his property,
that they might be interested in seeing.. Jerry said the guy pulled out what
looked like a solid piece of Silver, that was about the size of one of those
"big" Cowboy Belt Buckles, that you see some of the Rodeo Riders wearing !The
people in the Club didn't know what to make of him, and thought it was a joke,
or that he was some kind of wacko? The guy was a State Trooper, that lived in
Johnson's Bayou, and his last name was Prescott!... (I can't remember his First
name, but I think it was John...I can find out though, because I know someone
that worked with him that is still alive, and living in Lake Arthur,
Louisiana). About 2 years ago, Jerry Ferguson, another lady from our Lake
Charles Office, and myself drove over to the Sallier Museum in Lake Charles,
where the famous Sallier Oak is located... The girl had never been to the
Museum, so we decided take her over there so she could see it. We were in there
talking to the Assistant Curator, and the subject of Gold, and Treasure came
up!... The guy said: "Wait one minute, I've got
something to show you!"... When he came back he had 1-Pound piece of Gold in his
hand, that was shaped like a Coin, but it was about 5/8ths of an Inch thick and
had an insignia of a Spanish Cross stamped on the top surface of it!... I though
it was a reproduction, and said: "That's not real...
is it?" And the Curator said: "YES, its real Gold!"...
Besides this piece of gold, there was a smaller Spanish coin, that was a little
larger than a Dime, and was also stamped with the insignia of a Spanish Cross...
I can't remember if it was Jerry or myself that asked the Assistant Curator:
"Where did you get those things?"... And "this" is what he said: "THEY WERE
DONATED TO THE MUSEUM, BY A STATE TROOPER THAT LIVED DOWN IN JOHNSON'S
BAYOU!!!"... Jerry and I looked at each other, and I think a "Chill" ran up both
of our Spines! And the incident of the Belt Buckle size piece of what looked
like Silver came back to Jerry and me!!!... I went and visited Lee Boudin, the
State Trooper that used to work with Prescott, and rode with him in the Patrol
car many times... Lee is in his 80's now... I told him the story that I have
just finished telling you, an
Thank You So Much !
Username: Dan Lamb
W. T., my name is Dan Lamb and I live in Fort Worth, Texas. In twenty days I
will become a retired US History and Government/Economics teacher after 37 years
in the classroom. I plan on spending a good part of that time in research on
historical topics of familial importance. I was particularly struck by your
article on the Jayhawkers of western Louisiana. My 3rd and 2nd great
grandfathers were members of the 2nd La. Cavalry Scouts (Union). My 2nd gr.
grandfather ( Enoch L Brooks) was awol after just 4 days of Confederate
bombardment and siege at Alexandria, but my 3rd gr. grandfather ( Elisha L.
Brooks) served as Dennis Haynes' Quarter-master for the duration of the 6 month
enlistment of the unit. It is particularly this individual that has spurred my
curiosity for Scouts history. In your Jayhawker article you expressed a hope
that other historians would take up the mantle of research on these east Texas
and western Louisiana unionists. I will now have the time and the inclination to
get involved in the hunt. I am aware of Art Bergeron's work in the field (cited
in your bibliography on the Jayhawkers - though I haven't read it yet); I am
also familiar with the "Southern Claims" testimony that Dennis Haynes gave to
that federal commission in 1870(I believe) and of course the records of union
dispatches in the Civil War. After these sources I am at a dead end for sources
on the "Scouts". After all of this, I guess my questions to you is, are you
aware of other sources that I might find useful in my research? Any help would
be greatly appreciated.
Username: Dana Fellows
I a cousin to the Sabine Pass McGaffey's and came upon your site. I have a letter from the 1830's that talks about a great uncle leaving Dixon IL to go to Texas. The heat was apparently to much for him and he returned to Illinois about a year later.
Username: Rosslyn Alexander
Dear Mr. Block, I love your articles because my great-great grandparents lived in Nederland. They were Martin and Kathrena Wagner and children. I know you have written a couple of articles about them somewhere. If you please, let me know which articles or if you have any good stories about them, I would appreciate it. My great-father was Edward "Alex" Wagner. Thanks so much, Rosslyn Alexander
Username: Kirk Clark
Interesting timing on you recent WWII story. I just purchased some old ration stamp books this weekend in Austin. I reviewed these today with my father who was also in WWII, and had just moved from Corpus Christi to Orange when Pearl Harbor was bombed. We worked at the Pure Oil Refinery in Beaumont following the war, we all called the road by the rubber plant, of course, rubber plant road. he said the tires back then were so thick, that when the tread wore off, they had stations that took a soldering gun and carved new grooves in the tires. His sister used to sing for the USO and traveled the US doing so. I interviewed her as part of my history requirements at Lamar in 1979, I've lost the interview but remember the Victory gardens she used to grow. Her husband was lost during the war for 9 months and listed as dead, she actually received papers to this effect. In reality, he serviced US planes on a small classified island in the Pacific, these were wounded or damaged planes that were used for attack. While on the island, they put an aircraft engine in a PT boat and would ride around the island. She has pictures he smuggled off the island they took with a Japanese camera, may be the only ones in existence.
Username: Kirk Clark
I have not been able to corroborate his note of a 1823 hurricane, I was at the Tyrrell Library last week reviewing Ben Stuart's handwritten book on hurricanes from 1818 to 1920 (which is deteriorating badly), but he did not note this one either. I cannot find his source reference for this, what I have discovered is that app. 2000 pages of original source material, 1000 pages of manuscripts, his letters and correspondence, and various precious artifacts of the Laffite Commune did not make it to the Rosenberg library, one of which was the only sketch in existence of Lafitte's fort by one of Lafitte's men.
Still on the trail....
Username: Malinda Fawvor-Dickerson
Hello W. T., 5-7-2007
Talk with you later,
Username: John Daugherty
Hello Mr. Block,
Username: Malinda Dickerson
Hello W. T.,
I was wondering if you could tell me everything that you remember about Victoria Miller Sweeney. Did she have a middle name? Do you know anything about her sisters?
Malinda Fawvor - Dickerson
Username: Laura Dowell
Hello, while doing some extensive research on my German heritage, I ran
across an article (somehow!) that you had written in the Texan German ancestry
area regarding an "old German" by the name of Otto Figge. I believe he may have
been my great, great grandfather.
You can email me at Calypsoldy57 msn.com
Thank you in advance, Laura Dowell
Username: thomas c. gray
Anna Gray Sweeney Noe (b. 4/3/1902) was the daughter of Hazel Cosper Sweeney (b. 1884) and John Dennis Sweeney. Hazel Cosper was the daughter of Adelia (Ada) Zeretha Gray (b. 9/25/1841)and Dr. William Cosper.
Adelia (Ada) Zeretha Gray was one of 13 children (four males and 9 females) of Alexander Key Gray and Martha Powell Gray. They lived in Carroll and Lowndes Co., MS.
All four of the male children of Alexander and Martha Gray died young. Three died in a family feud with a sibling's in-laws ("The Choctaw Tragedy") and the other died in 1854 during the Walker Expedition to Nicaragua.
My great great grandfather, William Powell Gray, died in the Choctaw Tragedy on 11/24/1861. His wife was pregnant with my great grandfather, William Ernest Gray at the time of her husband's death. There were no other male children to survive this Gray lineage.
Username: ashley welch
I was reading the articles about the "panther" sightings and found them rather interesting. I live in the woods on family land, in Independence, Louisiana. Well, about 4 years ago, me and my husband were leaving, and as we were going down the road, there it sat. In the middle of the road, the largest black cat I have ever seen in person, outside of a zoo. The sighting didn't last long at all, the cat disappeared into the woods. It looked to be nearly 3 feet long and close to 50 pounds maybe. That was the last sighting until these last few weeks. The cat or cats have been hanging around mine and my cousins house late at night. The animals do not knock over trash cans or anything, they just take casual strolls through the yard late at night. They are scared off easily though. I'm never able to get a picture of the cat. One that we have seen isn't very big, but bigger than a male bobcat. Another that we have seen is very large. the belly of the cat has to be at least 1 and 1/2 feet from the ground. We are worried about these sightings because we have small children around here and small pets. We have notified the Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries, but they tell us that the cats don't exist in Louisiana, that there is no scientific proof. I guess they cant take our word for it. They tell us that photos, tracks, bedding area, or the carcass of the animal is needed before they can do anything about it. I guess we will have to find a way to get the evidence they need. Hopefully it will be before a beloved pet or even worse, a child, is harmed. I do plan on taking pictures of it somehow. If I have anymore sightings, I will be more than happy to post them.
I read the piece about black panthers in East Texas. I grew up in Tool in Henderson Co. Tx (just about 3 or 5 miles East of the Trinity River Bottoms). While I was 15 yrs old, one summer night in 1978 or 1979, I heard what sounded like a lady screaming out like she was in great pain and was dying. It sounded like it was right out my window. The hairs on the back of my neck stood on end. There was eerie silence after that then I heard a pack of coyotes in the distance yelping. I just assumed that the sound was a coyote. It wasn't until recently that I was told by friend in Terrell that what I heard was a black panther. My mother still lives in the same house in Tool, and she told me that she still hears that same sound sometimes, but that she always thought that it was coyotes because she always hears coyotes every night. I heard about a report of someone claiming that a black panther was seen following a woman and her children while walking out in the woods near their home in Athens, Tx.
I'll never forget the sound that night. I thought someone was being murdered at the time, I'm sure it must have been a panther. Just thought you might want to know.
I enjoyed your website.
Username: Belinda Smith
I love your site. Your article on Rev. John August Tubbe was excellent. I am
a descendant of his.
I want to tell you how much I admire your work, and that I discovered your
work while researching the Unionist Collins brothers of the Big Thicket. Did you
know that Warren, Newton, and Stacy Jr. were brothers to several members of
another well-known band of deserters of the Confederate Army, the Free State of
Jones of Piney Woods, Mississippi, headed by Newt Knight? Also, do you know
whether or not any of the East Texas Collinses became Populists during the 1890s
as did many of their kin back in Mississippi?
Username: Rafael Block
So good to see your web site. I have enjoyed learning many new things from it. I also have a copy of your book 'Sapphire City of the Neches' that was given to my father, James Allen Block.
Do you know what his relationship to you was? I think he may have been a cousin, but would like to know exactly how and through what common ancestor.
Thanks again for your tireless research.
Rafael Allen Block
Username: Christie Eaves
I just reread the article from 1984 about Christian Hillebrandt and I just wanted to let you know that it is incorrect for 2 reasons. The Hillebrandt Cemetery is not deserted as you made it seem, as a matter of fact, the Beaumont Enterprise just showed another point of mine that a Hillebrandt was burried there in Feb of this year. There are still many of us around, until 1 year ago, I myself was still in Jefferson County and I'm very disappointed that you say without full knowledge that there are very few of us left. I would like to know how much research you did on that before you printed it.
Username: Judy Hodges
Dear Mr. Block,
I have been enjoying your articles for several years now, especially "A
Buccaneer Family in Spanish East Texas: A Biographical Sketch of Captain James
and Mary Sabinal Campbell". Mary Sabinal (Sharbeno) was my 4th great-aunt.
Because of your Endnotes I was delighted to received today, from The Center for
American History at the University of Texas, a copy of Mary Campbell's obituary
that was in the Galveston Daily News. However, they were unable to find a copy
of the article you listed as Mary S. Campbell, "Buccaneers-The Memoirs of Mary
Campbell", Galveston Daily News, May 25, 1879. I also tried to get copies from
the Rosenburg Library in Galveston, but they were not able to get a copy for me
either. Do you know of any other source where I may find a copy of this article?
Username: Jim Bales
Hello Mr. Block,
Username: Lon Lovett
Hello, Mr. Block -
My name is Alonzo Corley Lovett - I go by Lon Lovett. My g-g-g-grandfather is Davis Long of DeSoto Parish, La. Subsequently Capt. James Long, William A. Fletcher, John W. Keith, and Frank L. and Joseph A. Carrol are my uncles. My g-g-grandmother is Emma Long (or Emily, her given name). She married James Marion Corley of Natchitoches parish, LA. They owned several cotton farms and more than one sawmill.
The Corleys came from Alabama in the 1850s---headed to greener pastures in Texas. They were stopped by the Sabine River in LA, and my branch stayed. They brought some sawmill equipment with them and made a living by cutting/selling pine lumber in Sabine parish. They also planted cotton. My g-g-grandfather James Marion Corley married Emily (emma) Long of DeSoto parish after the Civil War. They did well for themselves....had several farms as far north as East Point, LA, and as far south as Natchitoches and even sometimes in Rapides parish. There are records of sawmills at Natchitoches/RedRiver parish borders and Rapides parish.
I was excited to here of the Long connection thru Beaumont. I'd be much obliged to you to point me in the right direction to obtain all the literature I can on the Longs, Carrolls, Fletchers of Beaumont--or any information on the Corleys of Lousiana and Texas you can provide. Can you help?
Thanks so much.
Username: Chris Nelms
I want to thank you for your excellent articles. I appreciate their historical accuracy. I am involved in a land survey study of the Camino Real de Los Tejas and came across your article of John Fletcher. Where can I find more information on Capt. McKim's journal and Glenn's crudely drawn map? Your help is appreciated.
Username: Debby Jarrett
Mr. Block, What a wonderful wealth of information! My husband, Richard Leslie
Jarrett, Jr. are researching the history of his family and have had great
difficulty doing so. His great grandmother was Cora E. Langham, daughter of
James Biddle Langham. Her first husband, Richard Jarrett, and his sister, Ida
Jarrett, have been impossible to trace. Imagine our surprise to see Ida
mentioned twice in the Entertainment article.
Username: Jerry McInnis
Have a book copy called Citrus Belt of Texas written in 1912. This shows Port Arthur, Orange (named for orange) Liberty and our area was where most citrus grew commercially. I am sure about 1914 the farmers said forget the fruit and lets get a new job at Texaco etc.
If interested, let me know
you for sharing our history with us via the internet.
Recent editions or the Louisiana Legends Magazine carry two panther stories. The magazine is a collection of local stories from Northeast LA. Inside of the front cover the editor is listed as:
Username: Jimmie Gilley
Hi Mr. Block
I would like to know the location of the Olive Cemetery, near Kountz Tx.
Username: Myrna L Burr
I'm not from Texas or Louisiana, I'm From Ohio I Had A sighting of in 1943
.We Lived In the county. I was Looking Out the Kitchen Window an Seen The Most
Beautiful Black Cat it Wasn't a House cat I'd No Luck with them.. This One was
Close to 100 lb or about. My Grandmother come over to see what what i was so
happy about and moved my chair away from the window.
Then her and my uncle talk ,he said he was getting the T.N.T.
No never heard the Tnt.. Thank You For Your
Time, I Now Live in Calif.. I Believe That is has an Are still Big Black Cats
Myrna L Burr
Username: Virginia Harris
Username: gwen Bourgeois
Username: Johann Lohrmann
Dear Mr. Block,
My name is Johann Lohrmann and I am the Senior Researcher for Witness to War. The Witness to War Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the stories and unique experiences of combat veterans.
One of my responsibilities is to gather stills for use on our website. I am interested in your source for the photo of the Ramagen Bridge and would like permission to use the image.
Thank you so much for your site and for your work.
Username: Tom Beaty
Username: Shirley Dewberry
Dear Mr. Block:
I located the following information at the library in LaGrange, Troup County, Georgia.
Likens, Mrs. Mary G., 26 y. d. 11-16-1829 in Athens, wife of Maj. Thomas M. Likens, proprietor of the Franklin Hotel.
Ath 11-17-1829 & 11-24-1829
(Mary Likens died the same year James B. Likens was born. Probably complications from childbirth.)
Username: David Kimball
I am researching "blockade running" during the Civil War. My ancestor who lived in Avoyelles Parish, LA did this and I am trying to learn as much as I can about the practice. I assume he transported cotton from his plantation down Bayou des Glaises to the Atchafalaya River and on the the Gulf where he exchanged it for guns and ammo. Any ideas?
Username: Steve Maskas
I am in the early stages of research on sawmills in southwest Louisiana in the early 1900's. Having been raised in DeRidder, Louisiana, I am especially interested in the sawmills in Bon Ami and Carson, Louisiana. Having seen your name in several sites I have visited, I was hoping you could help me by suggesting some readings that reference these particular towns and their mills.
Username: Harold Hollis
Mr. Block, I am attempting to find information on Delia Lea, who has possible connections in Austin, late 19th through early 20th century. In your research on the Lea name, have you found any mention of the name DELIA? Thanks in advance.
Username: Ben Thomas
Re: Panthers...Although I come from a pioneer family in Orange, I now live
south of Merryville, La. Some five years ago, my daughter's fiance' came up from
Lumberton to deer hunt. I put him in a likely tree stand before light with
instructions to watch a thicket where I knew a buck had been bedding. He was
back at the house by 8am, clearly spooked.
Username: Dan Daly
We would appreciate your permission to post a link to your article "Requiem for a Confederate Gunboat: The CSS Josiah H. Bell" on our website - the Friends of the Old Naval Hospital.
As it happens, the first patient admitted into this Hospital in Washington DC on October 1, 1866, was Benjamin Drummond, who was stationed aboard the USS Morning Light and shot in the leg during the engagement when it was captured by the Confederate "Cotton Clads" Josiah Bell and the Uncle Ben.
We have posted reports of the engagement contained in Volume 19 of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion. Obviously, both Cotton Clads are mentioned in those reports.
We are also trying to post information about every ship involved in that battle, and your article is the best resource we have found about the Bell.
Please contact me at your convenience if you wish to discuss this matter.
Username: Paul Ponder
Dear Mr Block
Username: Dan Daly
Thank you for your most prompt response to my inquiry yesterday regarding your article “Requiem for a Confederate Gunboat: The CSS Josiah H. Bell” and the battle on January 21, 1863 in which the CSS Bell participated in the capture of the USS Morning Light. We are also grateful for your permission to provide a link to your article and to post a copy of that article on our website [www.oldnavalhospital.org].
I am not offended that the capture of the USS Morning Light was too small an event to attract much attention. As I understand from your article, this was the only combat action in which the CSS Josiah Bell was ever engaged.
As noted in my first email (sent twice by mistake) I am interested in your article about the CSS Josiah Bell because it was one of the two Confederate “Cotton Clads” that captured the USS Morning Light, during which Benjamin Drummond, a Union sailor, was shot in the leg. Drummond was the first patient admitted to the Naval Hospital, Washington City, (now called the Old Naval Hospital), and he was admitted for treatment of the gunshot wound received in that battle.
I am with the Friends of the Old Naval Hospital, and as part of our efforts to research and document the history of the Old Naval Hospital we are trying to place information (including images) about every ship that participated in that action. We have not been able to find any images of the CSS Josiah H. Bell, and hope you might be able to refer us to a source for that purpose. Are you aware of any images of the Bell that we might be able to post on our site.
The other Confederate steamer involved in the capture of the USS Morning Light was the CSS Uncle Ben. Your article “The Cottonclad Gunboat "Uncle Ben:" Cotton-Carrying Workhorse of the Sabine” (Beaumont ENTERPRISE, October 24, 1974) stated in part that “The only known picture of the "Uncle Ben" was one drawn by a Union war correspondent which later appeared in the "Harper's Weekly" for Oct. 10, 1863,…” I have looked at that issue of Harper’s Weekly, but did not find an image of the Uncle Ben. There was an image on the top of page 652 titled “THE ATTACK ON SABINE PASS, SEPTEMBER 8, 1863" - but that only depicts Union gunboats. Do you have another citation for the picture of the Uncle Ben?
Once again, many thanks for your response and permission to cite your work.
Username: MONTY PICARD
DEAR MR. BLOCK, I HAVE READ YOUR ARTICLES FOR YEARS. I HAVE DONE SOME FAM
RESEARCH ALSO. MY HUSBANDS GREAT GRANDFATHER WAS KILLED IN A SULFUR MINE
ACCIDENT IN LA. VERY EARLY 1900'S. IS THERE A WAY TO FIND OUR ABOUT ACCIDENT?
ALL WE KNOW OF HIS NAME IS "FRENCHIE PICKARD" WAS MARRIED TO FELICIA HAD THREE
SONS... LEE ORA, EDGAR, AND TOOTSIE. THANK YOU SO
Username: Billie Fowler Hinze
I am a descendant of George Washington Hargraves and recently read your article on "Jefferson County's Role During the Texas Revolution". There seems to some question about the volunteers and when they arrived in Texas. However, Isaac Ryan, his cousin, was killed at the Alamo and this family disaster probably prompted him to raise a company consisting of friends and cousins. Isaac's Mother and GW's father were brother and sister. Isaac's death was surely a devastating blow to this young cousin and inspired him to "go to Texas" and fight. I am certain that many of the men who joined him did in fact live in Louisiana.
If you have any information that will help me in my quest I will certainly appreciate it. I also will happily share any new information I acquire with you.
Billie Fowler Hinze
Username: Cynthia Moreland
I live in Morris Ranch Texas and I'm wondering if you have any information on ghost sightings or stories to that area. My family and I have had some strange things happen to us and recently discovered Morris Ranch to be a ghost town. Any information will be greatly appreciated.
Username: C. Raymond burklin
When I first arrived I roamed with a family on Neches St just across the road from the plant. I do not recall the name of the family. The had a relative new house, single story ,white frame that was probably on the west end of the street. Did you perchance know a "Lovey' Sinleton that lived across the street from the high school. She was the secretary for our Process Group.
I very impressed with your web page. I will not be able to give my personal
history the professional look of yours. But I'm going to give it a shot. My
computer skills are limited and at 86 it can be challenging. We have a Community
College near our retirement community I probably take some courses.
My time in Pt. Neches was limited, but it's fun at times to reflect back the events of the time. Let me know if there is any question about the plant that I might be able to answer.
Username: kent conwell
was fletcher elementary named at willia a fletcher, who wrote the memoirs of the civil war?
Username: jonathan bonner
hey there fella, I saw one of them big black cats down on the Angelina river. If maybe you like to here my story then we can talk a bit.
Username: Andrew E. Kline
Sir, my name is Andrew E. Kline, I am the grandson of William A. Brown SSGT , 78th Div, 309th Inf Reg, Co F , Rhineland and Ruhr WW II. I was writing you to see if you knew him or met him while you were there. He sadly passed away in 1964 and I was not born yet. I am trying to research anything about him while he was in Germany. He was shot on April 13th 1945, and received the CIB on March 10th 1945. He was discharged in Oct of 1945 from Europe. Any help would be great, thanks for your time and service.
Andrew E. Kline, 390 Furey St south Williamsport Pa 17702
Username: Lavonna Norris
Username: Robert W. Sheffield
I am trying to find a picture of my grandmother (May Sweeney) of Grand Chenier. I found a space under the archives of Cameron Parish for the Sweeney family, but the picture does not appear. We may be related. My great grandfather was Frank Pleasant and my great grandmother was Caroline Smith. If you can help me locate a picture of her, I would be deeply grateful.
Username: Marietje Potjewijd-Kuipers
Dear Mr Block
Username: Matty Glas-Doornbos
hello Mr. Block
Username: James Perry
When I was ten (1960)a big cat came to our back door in southern Montgomery County. I was there with my sister and a black woman taking care of us for the night. the cat beat on a sweet gum tree and scratched the bark. The dogs were silent as they were small squirrel dogs. I was only about twenty five feet from the tree. My window is the only thing that separated us. It was too dark to see but I will never forget that defiant gritty scream. The lady said she would never come back to Satan's backyard. This was where the Woodlands is now not far from Panther Branch running into Spring Creek. It was a profound thicket.
Username: CORINA SMITHEY
HELLO I AM IN SEARCH OF MARY CHRISTEEN MYERS PARENTS MAMMIE MYERS-MENASCO WHO MARRIED JOE TAYLOR MYERS ALSO I NEED TO KNOW MAMMIE PARENTS TOO. IF YOU KNOW WHERE I CAN START OR IF YOU HAVE ANY INFO .. I WOULD BE VERY PLEASED THANK YOU
Username: Mark Underhill
As a member of Coast Guard Station Sabine Pass, I am working on a brief of our history.
I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you.
Username: Phil Handley
Just finished your article about Jules Bouquet in the Chronicle and enjoyed
it very much. He lived an interesting and long life. Hope all is well with you.
Thank You !
Username: MichaelScott Hightower/Davison/Carey
Mr. Block, My Name is Michael Scott Hightower. I am Seth Carey's Great-Great Grandson. We communicated several years ago when I led you to his burial site in Baytown, right next to Cedar Bayou. Grandpaw Carey left my grandfather an extremely interesting map. Before my Grandfathers death in 1999 my Grandfather chose me from among the family to share some extremely important information and to take me some where where his mother (who I believe was Seth's daughter) was taken to by Seth. Our Family has always kept an eye on this spot for any activity. There has been none. Before he lost his strength my Grandfather took me to the exact spot. Today it would be easy as ever to dig, however houses are now not too far away. I talked to the Texas Board of Antiquities (sp?) and have been given a green light to keep what I find as long as I pay for it and involve Texas A & M's Archeology Department full participation. Texas even gave me a list of trusted companies to do the work. Do you remember me? May I visit you and share some more and ask for your guidance. I am determined to share with you and your family that which I will recover. Your story about Grandpaw Seth led me to some of your other writings and led me to one last answer to one last question. I will be acting soon and would be Honored to have you with me. Right now I live in Baytown and can come to you in about an hour. Can we please Talk? Scott Hightower (713) 204-3334
P.S. Did you get to visit his grave here in Baytown? If not Would You like to? I can easily take you there and return you home in several hours (approximately 3 hours round trip for you? Thank-You so much for your work, Scott
P.S.S. I enjoy studying WW I and WW II. I'm impressed with what you did in Europe Please do not get too old before we talk, I need your input and will share absolutely everything with you.
Username: Jock JR Gordon
Dear Mr Block,
Username: Judy Guidry
Mr. Block, I am trying to find any information you may have on a weekly paper
by the name of "The Lakeside Review" published in Cameron Parish in the year
Username: Bridgitt Dickey Ayers
I found this site by Googling my Grandmother, Juanita Goodwin. I found her in the article that talks about early Nederland educational history. I was so excited! My mom, Norma Dickey, Juanita's daughter-in-law, is the family historian, but I'm interested in my ancestry, too. The second time I logged onto the site, I saw the page about "Family" and read the article about the Goodwins on that page. Thank you for letting me see a part of my history here.
Username: HAROLD BENDER
WE WOULD LIKE TO KNOW ABOUT THE OLD BEAUMONT DRILLING COMPANY OR CLOSE TO THAT NAME AND WHAT BECOME OF IT
Username: Jock JR Gordon
Dear Mr. Block,
Username: allen hightower
Good morning Mr. Block
Username: Chris Nelms
Could you please tell me where I can get a copy of your book, "Emerald of The Neches: The Chronicles of Beaumont, Texas From Reconstruction To Spindletop"
Username: Thomas R. Bahnsen
Dear Mr. Block, I received a letter from you in November 1999. I am a distant cousin. My grandmother was Ellen Sweeney Bahnsen. I have recently got a new computer and have started putting information that I have collected from you and Joy Moore. I find your articles very interesting. My grandfather Anton Bahnsen came from Germany . He sailed boats from Moss Lake to Galveston on the Fanny that you wrote about . I was also curious about My grandmother's first husband John Lyons. I have the marriage date but we never did know if he remarried . One of those deep secrets. Well guess I will sign off. My address is Thomas R. Bahnsen 1320 West Street Vinton, La. 70668
Username: Ken Booker
I was raised in Nederland, on South 6th Street. I went to high school in
Nederland, majored in music at Lamar, and eventually earned a doctorate at the
University of Texas in music composition. Now, I teach music at Lee College in
Anyway, I would love to hear your take on this.
Username: James Lee
Dear Mr. Block,
Username: Judy Brown-Basden
Dear Mr. Block,
I have enjoyed reading your articles for years. My great,
great, grandfather was David R. Wingate of
Username: Larry Myers
I am a descendent of Jacob Myers who built the Slate Creek Iron Works for John Cockey Owings and his son Thomas Dye Owings. I was wondering if we could talk about this. I found connections to Christopher Gist. It seems like Christopher Gist's brother Thomas Gist is married to Susan Cockey who is John Cockeys Owings aunt.
Username: Shirley Magee
Mr. Block, My cousin and I have been trying to find the grave of our gg grandfather Eli Hugh Lovett. He is supposed to have died in Panhandle Co., TX. He was the father of Henry Bell Lovett of Pampa, TX. He also had a son with with his second wife. His name was John Walter Lovett. He was my g grandfather. Would appreciate any help. Thank you. Shirley
Username: Winnie Knight Hendrix
Just found you by accident. I am not very good with the computer. I found this Moye from Tyler County, Texas. I am trying to connect some Moyes to my Moyes in Polk County, Texas. I need to know if John C. Moye is a brother to Thomas "Bright" Moye, which is my GGGrandfather. Thanks for your help.
Winnie K. Hendrix
Username: Kirk Clark
I found some antics from the mysterious W. S. Glenn in 1903. If you are interested, I'll make a copy and send by regular mail.
Username: Laurel Jasper
Dear Mr. W. T. Block
Username: Robert W. Sheffield
I e-mailed you on 13 Aug 2007 about finding a picture of my grandmother, May Corinne Sweeney. In the meantime, Kathy Tell from the Cameron Parish, Louisiana web site re-entered a picture that you submitted on the Sweeney Family Members (1900). Keep up the great work.
Robert W. Sheffield
Username: Ritchard Bean
I am a Wallings Dairy collector. My mother worked there in the 60's and I
stocked dairy shelves at Guidry's grocery on Avenue H. I am having trouble
finding any bottles except a round quart with orange lettering. My question
focuses on what might be available. I collect dairy items and know that pints,
quarts, 1/2 gallons and gallons were normal sizes. The 1/2 pints were usually
for schools. I have also bottles that were for cottage cheese, etc. Do you know
why the Wallings bottles are so scarce and what sizes should be available?
Username: Claire Mills
Dear Mr. Block,
This past Saturday, my husband was playing golf at Hollytree Country Club here in Tyler and saw a large cat. It has bothered me ever since he told me about it. I "Googled" the topic of "large cats native to east Texas" and came across your website. He was playing with three other men and were approaching the green of hole 5 at around 1:30pm. They saw a rusty red cat about the size of our very large golden retriever. It was going after a squirrel. The men stood in amazement and watched as it went off in the nearby woods.
Hope this is of interest.
Hi Mr. Block - just found your web site - wonderful articles. I have a magazine and one of our blogs is used to promote local writers and books with Gulf coast themes, plots and/or connections. I'd like to include some info about you and your books from your web site with a link back to your web site. In respect of your copyright, wanted to ask for permission.
Username: Donna J. LePosa
I sent an email regarding black panthers in Texas, the email was returned to me. I have an interesting "story" concerning one.
Username: Susan Hudeck
Hi, My father's grandfather was Christian Hillebrandt which you write about
in one of your books. I was wanting to know how I could purchase this book?
Username: Bill Parrish
I found your website by searching a name I found on a photograph.
I found an old photograph of a sailing ship with "Margaret M Ford" printed on the bow. I'm sorry I'm a landlubber :-) trying to describe a sailing vessel... but there are two triangular sails on the bow and three squarish sales behind it. 3 masts total. I had to take a magnifier and a strong light to read the name on the side of the bow.
This is in some old estate items, and I would be happy to scan and send it to you if they would be of interest.
There is another picture in the bunch I've got (with the same lab number on the back) that is a four-story building that might be from that area as well.
These photos are all jumbled up, but I sorted them by lab numbers to try to keep similar things together.
Let me know if you would like me to scan these, and let me know where to send them.
Bill Parrish / Meadow Vista, CA.
Mr. Block: I found your website and would like for you to recount your military experience for our Association! Our website is located at: www.usvra.us. We were founded this year as a way to honor the service and sacrifice of all U.S. military veterans. We are uploading stories, anecdotes, photos and personal histories of servicemen and women during WWII, Korea and Vietnam. Hope to hear back! Regards, Mick Stewart Commander, USVRA (Interim)
Username: Linda K. Newcomer
Dear Mr. Block, After Hurricane Rita, my husband's aunt found a bundle of letters written to her father, J. O. Newcomer while he served in the Navy during WWI. J. O.'s father, C.O. Newcomer was a scaler who lived in Silsbee but worked in mill towns all over East Texas. We have taken these letters, typed them up and illustrated them with period posters and family photos. We have also included articles on the flu epidemic of 1918-1919 and other pertinent subjects. May we have permission to use your descriptions of various towns, how they got their names, etc.? It would add so much to the book. We are doing this project as a Christmas present to all on Newcomer side of the family, not to be sold, but hopefully to be copied and passed down. Whatever your response, I want you to know we have thoroughly enjoyed your work. I've lived in Southeast Texas all my life, and have learned more about it in the last six months than the last 46 years. I'm truly hooked on local history now, in part because of your writing. Thank you sir. Linda Newcomer
Username: SHELLEY WALTERS
I HAVE LIVED IN MAURICEVILLE SINCE I WAS A CHILD AND AS YOU KNOW, OUR SCHOOL MASCOT IS THE BLACK PANTHER. ONCE, WHEN I WAS YOUNGER, AT A FRIENDS HOUSE ADJACENT TO THE WOODS ON WHAT IS NOW HWY. 62 NEAR THE VOLUNTEER FIRE STATION WE WERE LYING IN BED WITH THE WINDOWS OPEN B/C OF THE HEAT WHEN WE HEARD A SCREECH THAT SOUNDED SIMILAR TO A WOMAN'S SCREAM. HER FATHER KNEW THE TWO NEIGHBORS THAT THEY HAD AND WE KNEW NOTHING WAS GOING ON AT THEIR HOMES. THE SCREECHING WENT OFF & ON FOR SEVERAL MINUTES. HER FATHER CAME IN AND TOLD US TO CLOSE THE WINDOWS AS THE NOISE DIDN'T STOP AFTER ONE 'SCREAM'. A PANTHERS 'SCREAM' OR WHATEVER THE TERM IS FOR IT HAS LONG BEEN DESCRIBED AS A WOMAN SCREAMING. I REMEMBER IT DISTINCTLY AND IF IT WAS NOT A PANTHER THEN I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO MAKE OF IT. FURTHERMORE, IF THE MELANISTIC CATS HAVE NEVER EXISTED HERE THEN HOW DO YOU SUPPOSE OUR SCHOOL NAMED IT'S MASCOT? I WOULD BE VERY INTERESTED TO KNOW ANY INFORMATION YOU HAVE ON MAURICEVILLE HISTORY, PICTURES INCLUDED IF THERE ARE ANY. MANY THANKS!
Username: Donovan Garcia
You have a great site but I have a question on the Diary of 1st Sergeant H.
Thanks for a great site.
Username: Evie Wilson
I need to ask you some questions about Port Neches during WWII. Although I grew up there, I was only recently made aware of the information and wanted to find out whether or not what I was told was true. I had your e-mail address once but have apparently lost it.
Username: scott grayson
Dear Mr. Block,
I found a copy of Briscoe's muster roll for Nov 21st 1835, including a number of Jefferson county enlistees. If you would like this information contact me.
Username: Denise Otterson
This is a wonderful site to read more about the war I am so proud my Grandfather fought in! If you have any way of helping me find out anyone who may have served with him I would really appreciate it. I sent for his records, most burned in the 1973 fire, but I do know that he served with the 78th division, 309th Infantry. I don't know the company. His name was George William Stockman, Jr. but he went by Bill. If anyone can help I would really love it. I have no one left to ask in my family. Thank-You. Sincerely. Denise Otterson, Bill Stockman's proud Granddaughter.
Username: Nancy Lindsey
I am trying to find information about Louis Chighizola,
Sr. who was a pirate with Jean Lafitte. My daughter-in-law is one of his
descendants, and her grandfather's information about family genealogy was lost
during his elderly years. Is there anyone you know who could help us with this
Username: George Castille
I obtained a copy of your book "Cotton Bales, Keelboats and Sternwheelers..." several years ago when I was doing research on logging and other commercial navigation on the Sabine (around 1989-91). I really enjoyed the information. Now I am doing some research on two property disputes (water bottoms ownership) for the Johnson's Bayou area and on Phoenix Lake, the site of a mill on the Louisiana side of the Sabine. I copied some of your articles from your website. What do you recommend for a proper citation for some of the short articles that are not reprints (e.g. Early River Boats of Southwest Louisiana)? I need to give you credit for the citation; I'm not sure exactly how to do it. You do great work!
Username: George Castille
Do you know the story behind the 14 or so ship hulls that were sunk in the
Sabine River near the mouth of Conway's Bayou just below Orange? I took pictures
of the exposed hulls recently and am curious as to what types of vessels these
were and who abandoned them.
Username: Sean Valdez
After reading your article on black panthers in Texas, I would like to share my black panther sighting. This happened 2 years ago. I know its kinda long to wait and tell someone. I was attending Stephen F. Austin State University and I was on a bus trip to Sam Houston State University for our annual football game. I was seated in the front seat of the bus and on the outskirts of Huntsville. I was staring forward when I saw a large black cat run across the road. Now I know some people will say it probably was a black cat. But me and some friend commented on the size of this cat. I have never seen a cat the size of a great dane. It was indeed large. We figured we saw a panther and that they must exist in Texas. Reading your article today, I realized that they don't officially. But I am sure what I and others saw was a black panther.
Username: joseph villarreal
hello sir. I stumbled on your site while looking for ways to trap a black
panther we have near the house if it is even possible that is. I originally had
plans of killing it but after looking at everything on here i was wondering if
maybe I could get some help with this thing maybe confirm if it really is a
black panther since on your sight u said there hasn't really been any seen years
well if you can help me message me back thanks.
Username: CAPT Walt Wilson, USN (ret.)
Do you have any information on the schooner 'Texana', owned by Leverett
Sherman and sold to Benjamin Crone (1/3rd owner with John T. & Wm Brady and
Samuel Maas) in 1863 to run the blockade out of Galveston to Matamoros? The
Master was Zach Sabel and supercargo was A.S. Mair.
Username: Vernon Helmke
Your story about the Death March from Indianola to New Braunfels is not factual and it seems that it was based on one story you heard about this difficult time in the German migration to New Braunfels, Texas. I had my Great Grand mother and three of her daughters die at Indianola where the conditions were terrible due to mis managment of the Verine but my Great Grand father and my grand father and his brother and sister did make it and they did not die on the trip. Most people died in Indianola and after they got to New Braunfels. You should check your facts before you write a story like you did.